Building a wine cellar can be as simple as keeping a rotation of twenty bottles at a time, or it can be as involved as building a library from the best wineries in Yountville and around California. Whatever your undertaking, you’ll want to know the best practices for storing your wine at home so that your bottles stay safe until you’re ready to enjoy them.
The best wines can develop over time. Follow these tips to create the right conditions for your wine to taste better in the years to come.
Understanding temperatures for different styles
The most important ground rule for storing wine is that you keep your bottles in a relatively dark, cool place. When choosing your cellar, aim for a temperature between 45°F (7°C) and 65°F (18°C), with around 55°F (13°C) being ideal.
However, different styles of wine require different storage temperatures. For example, full-bodied reds like our Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon will be stored at a warmer temperature than light white wines.
Here are the recommended temperatures according to wine style:
- 60-65°F for full-bodied red wines
- 50-60°F for full-bodied whites and light red wines
- 40-50°F for light white wines, rosé, and sparkling wines
7 tips for storing your wine at home
#1: Avoid temperature fluctuations
Avoid storing your bottles near windows, heaters, appliances, and anywhere that experiences extreme temperature jumps.
#2: Keep away from light
Exposure to direct light can harm wine, causing it to age prematurely and develop off-flavors.
#3: Avoid vibrations
Vibrations, too, can disturb the aging process of your wine. Store your bottles away from washing machines, refrigerators, or heavy foot traffic areas.
#4: Maintain humidity levels
Aim for a humidity level of 50-70% in your wine storage area. Low humidity can cause your corks to dry out, which can spoil your wine.
#5: Store horizontally
Another way a cork can dry out is if you store your bottles standing up. Storing them on their sides keeps the cork moist which keeps them properly sealed.
#6: Don’t move them too much
Try to minimize disturbing your bottles. If you need to move them, keep them at a level position to minimize disturbing the sediment and stability of the wine.
#7: Keep track of your inventory
Stay organized. Label bottles with vintage, producer, and other relevant information in order to track their aging potential and get the most out of your collection.
Take after the best wineries in Yountville
We take our wine storage seriously. Visit our tasting room in downtown Yountville to learn how we store our single vineyard wines, stay organized, and keep track of serving temperatures.